Distribute the slips

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When to distribute

T4 slips
T4A slips
T4A-NR slips
T4A-RCA slips
You must provide your employees or recipients with their slips by the last day of February of the following calendar year to which the slips apply.
T1204 slips
T5018 slips
You are not required to distribute the slips. You may still provide a copy of the slip to the recipient.

Which method to use

Email or electronic portal

New You can distribute T4, T4A, T5 or T4FHSA slips by email or using an employer or payer's secure electronic portal without obtaining written or electronic consent from the employees or recipients before distributing the slips, unless any of the following apply:

  • The employee or recipient requested for the slips to be provided in paper copy
  • The employee or recipient cannot reasonably be expected to have access to the slips in electronic format at the time the slips are issued
  • If you distribute T4 slips, the employee is on extended leave or is a former employee at the time they are issued

If you are distributing slips by paper:

  • You must provide your employee or the recipient with 2 copies of the T4, T4A, T4A-NR and T4A-RCA slip in person or by mail to the employee or recipient's last known address.
  • The CRA suggests that the 2 copies be generated on one sheet.
  • For security purposes, your payroll program account number should not be printed on these copies.
  • Once a slip is completed, you may distribute photocopies to your employees or the recipients.

What happens if you distribute late or you do not distribute

If you distribute the slips late or you do not distribute, you may be assessed a penalty of $25 per day per slip with a minimum penalty of $100 and a maximum of $2,500.

What happens if you cannot distribute

If the slips are returned as undeliverable, you should keep the copies with the employee or the recipient's file.

If an employee or the recipient's address is known to be incorrect, the slips must not be sent to that address. You must do all of the following:

  • Document why the copies were not sent and the actions taken to obtain the correct address
  • Keep this information with the slip copies in the employee or the recipient's file
  • Include the slip with the information return when filing

What records to keep

You must keep your books and records in case the CRA asks to see them later.

Learn more: Keeping records.



ITR: 209
Distribution of taxpayers portions of returns
ITR: 209(2)
Taxpayer's portions of returns – Mail or deliver in person
ITR: 209(3)
Taxpayer's portions of returns – Send in electronic format with express consent
ITR: 209(4)
Taxpayer's portions of returns – Meaning of express consent
ITR: 209(5)
Taxpayer's portions of returns – Send T4, T4A, FHSA or Tuition Certificate in electronic format
CPP Reg: 13(1)
Distribution of employee's portions of returns
IECPR: 14(1)
Distribution of insured person's portions of returns
ITA: 230(1)
Records and books
CPP: 24(2)
Keeping of records and books of accounts
EIA: 87(3)
Retention for 6 years

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